I've been to Disney many times considering I was born and raised in Florida- I never realized how big of a deal it was then as I do now. I understand how big of a deal it was now because I understand the astronomical $$$COST$$$ involved- especially when you consider my parents had four kids!
There is a lot to consider when it comes to children and Disney World. I remember going to Disney and watching parents wrestle with overtired/overhot/cranky/having no fun children- and of course all of that meant the parents were having an even more miserable time. So, although I could not wait for the day I'd introduce my kids to Disney, Micky, and Cinderella's Castle- I determined that I would not do it until my kids could enjoy it. If I am going to pay a ridiculous amount of money on Disney World- both of my girls were going to REMEMBER and LOVE every sticking moment- and so was I!
WELL, Lupe and I were talking a few months ago and decided maybe before Tenly started Kindergarten in August we should take them. Tenly is more than old enough, but Gia is 3 1/2- a little younger than my original plan. But, we embarked on making some plans and seeing what our options were. We decided to go ahead and do it, although only for a day- we're only about 2 1/2 hours away. It is quite expensive to go to Disney nowadays- although worth the cost for the experience for our girls. No doubt, we were having to watch every penny and scrimp and save- I mean at this point, every penny still has a name- but we wanted to try.
It started to weigh on my mind a lot- wondering if Disney was a good financial decision at this point.?.? Was it a smart decision to put the little extra into Disney when we had other places we could put it that would start putting us ahead? I mean, the tickets alone were going to be around $275., then we had 1-2 nights at a hotel which is between $100-200, gas would be around $150., then their was food which I would guesstimate to be $150-200 (doing it cheap). So, it adds up- QUICKLY!
A little wrench was thrown in our plans when I realized that Tenly's "Meet The Teacher" day would be during our trip- and that's a big deal, big enough that Lupe and I would not miss it. As we began to try to figure out another day that would work, I began to think of another aspect of the decision "to go or not to go". What would we be teaching our girls (The Big Picture)? Would they actually ever know the details behind us trying to make this happen- no, probably not. But, what if they did- or what if one day they were in a situation over doing something fun or acting more responsibly- what would we tell them to do? I'm very sure that we would tell our them to take the responsible road and find a less expensive way to treat themselves to a day of fun.
So, we are not going to Disney in August- luckily we did not tell our girls we were even planning it- we are taking the- less exciting- but ultimately more rewarding road. We are going to continue to get ahead, pay off some more debt, and put ourselves in a better position to hopefully give the girls an early Christmas present in November. I'd be lying if I didn't say, it makes my heart a bit sad not to surprise them in a week or so yelling, "We're going to Disney World"- but it also makes me happy and gives me peace that we are being more responsible in planning for our family and our girls futures. Not the easiest decision we've had to make, but I'm convinced it was the right one.